The boisterous and self-confident Boxer is one of the great successes of the high quality "designer" dog breeding that took place in Germany 100 years ago.
Boxer origins trace back to the 16th century, with ancestors that include Tibetan fighting dogs, central European hunting dogs, and bulldogs. Today’s Boxer owes much of its development to German breeders in the 1800s. One of the first breeds to serve as police and military dogs in Germany, by 1900 the Boxer had become a beloved pet. Recognized by the AKC in 1904, the Boxer soared in popularity in the 1940s to its current high ranking.
Today, although the Boxer’s size varies from country to country, its personality remains the same – active, positive, strong and fun loving.
The Boxer is in many ways an ideal family dog, but due to its lifelong puppy-like behavior, fast reaction time and relatively large size, it can create unintentional havoc.
The breed’s muscular and intimidating appearance makes it an excellent house protector, but at the same time, it is as gentle as lamb with children.
Size: Medium to large; female 21 to 231⁄2 inches, 50 to 65 pounds; male 221⁄2 to 25 inches, 65 to 80 pounds.
Color: Fawn or brindle, usually with white markings.
Temperament: Intelligent, alert, courageous, and self-assured. Playful and exuberant, but patient with children.
Energy level: High (not hyperactive), mellows with age.
Best owner: Active family with a fenced yard.
Needs: Human contact (obedience, therapy, and companionship) and exercise (agility, play, leashed walks).
Life expectancy: 8 to 12 years.